FBI uses Nintendo Switch to locate abducted teen

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In August 2022, the FBI tracked a missing 15-year-old girl’s Nintendo Switch console to rescue her after she had been missing for 11 days.

The 15-year-old girl from Virginia met a stranger on the online chat platform Omegle. The stranger, Ethan Roberts, coerced her into sending explicit images. Roberts then traveled from Arizona to Virginia to kidnap the girl.

The girl’s family and local authorities worked with the nonprofit organization Hear Their Voices to find her. They were unable to locate her until a friend saw her online on her Nintendo Switch. The authorities collaborated with Nintendo to get the device’s IP address, which led them to the girl’s location. The FBI arrested Roberts and brought the girl back to safety.

The FBI representative, acknowledging the agency’s relentless pursuit of justice, asserted that this case serves as a clear message to criminals who believe they can evade capture. By leveraging their extensive resources and collaborating with local law enforcement, the FBI ensures that predators will face the consequences of their actions.

Ethan Roberts, the abductor, pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 30 years in federal prison.

The sources for this piece include an article in Kotaku.

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